Bembridge Harbour Trust to renew bid

Posted on 07 May 2011

Bembridge Harbour Trust                            News Release 26 April, 2011
Bembridge Harbour Trust to renew bid for Bembridge Harbour.
Following the collapse of the two companies that operate Bembridge harbour into administration, Bembridge Harbour Trust will renew its attempts to buy the harbour and associated properties.
This was announced by the chairman of the Trustees, Michael MacInnes, following funding meetings in Bembridge over the Easter weekend.
Meanwhile the harbour is continuing to be operated as a going concern by the administrators who are expected to package the two companies into one for sale shortly.
The Trust, a charity, was formed nearly four years ago by concerned local residents who feared that the future of the harbour was threatened by years of neglect and poor maintenance.
The Trust’s principal aim is to buy the harbour, restore it and to ensure its ownership in perpetuity for the benefit of the local communities and users of the harbour.
Last year, the Trust made three bids for the harbour, having taken professional advice on the valuation of the harbour and its properties, but these were rejected as too low by the then owner.
“We now have a marvellous opportunity finally to buy the harbour and, if we are successful, put right years of neglect that threaten the future of the harbour as a ‘working’ harbour for sailors, fishermen and marine businesses alike”, said Mr. MacInnes. “We are ready to take on this responsibility for the benefit of everybody who enjoys the harbour for its sailing, wild life, angling, walking or as one of the Isle of Wight’s major tourist and recreational amenities”.
Mr MacInnes said that the new owner of the harbour would have to spend immediately in the region of £1/2m dredging the harbour as this had not been done for eight years and water levels were very low in places. Other urgent remedial work would have to be carried out on the pontoons, the quay walls and visiting sailors’ amenities; all at considerable cost.
Mr MacInnes and Mr Chris Attrill have already had a preliminary meeting with the administrators and advised them of the Trust wish to bid.
The Trust has over 170 founder members drawn mainly from residents in Bembridge, St. Helens, Brading and Seaview and has four distinguished patrons, Sir Robin Knox-Johnson, Lord Brabazon of Tara, Peter Nicholson CBE and Maldwin Drummonds OBE as well as an advisory board representing many local business and social interests.

“With our members and advisers, we also have wide commercial support through the local communities who have the skills and expertise so we can get the harbour up and running properly again – if we get the chance to buy it,” said Mr. MacInnes.<br> Further information:<br> Michael MacInnes, chairman Bembridge Harbour Trust: tel.: 018983 872108 or email: <a href=”” data-mce-href=””></a><br> Donald Biddle, trustee, Bembridge Harbour Trust: Tel.: 01983 875561 or email: <a href=”” data-mce-href=””></a><br> Note. Bembridge Harbour Improvements Company and Maritime and Leisure Investments Limited were placed in administration on 13 April following a winding up petition by HM Customs and Revenue.<br> Bembridge Harbour Trust is a registered charity, number 1120225 and is also a company limited by guarantee under company number 05671595.

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